Christmas Traditions to Start with Your Kids Now!

I’ve always loved the entire Christmas season.  From decorating the tree and looking at the beautiful homes lit up with Christmas lights to seeing someone you care about face light up when they open that one special gift, let us not forget to help those less fortunate than us.  Christmas is so much fun.  Here is a list of my ideas and traditions with loved ones.

  1. Turn your children’s pictures into Christmas an ornament.  I find this a great way to build memories, and it’s easy to do.  Just go to Walmart with your child’s Christmas photo or photo with Santa, and for starting at $10, they will make it an ornament.  

You can also do this online at Wal-Mart.com or, for a little more money, Shutterfly. When you decorate your tree each year, you can hang ornaments of all past pictures.

2.        Make ornaments/buy a new ornament

You can do this in many different ways.  You can make them out of paper, felt, or clay (with one of these clay recipes).  If you’re not into crafts, you can take the kids out shopping each year to pick a new ornament for the tree.

3. Drive around and look at Christmas lights on houses/Christmas lights scavenger hunt

Everyone loves Christmas lights.  Take a trip in the car and drive around looking at the beautiful lights.  Have older children?  Want a challenge?  Turn it into a scavenger hunt.  Type up a list of things to find while looking at lights.  Here are some ideas: Santa Claus, Sled, Reindeer, Wreath, Nativity Scene, Candy Cane, Christmas Tree, Elf, etc…

4. Bake and Decorate Cookies – Need I say more? Who doesn’t love Christmas cookies?

5. Sing Christmas Carols while decorating.

6. Have the kids make their own Christmas cards to send to special loved ones.

7. Build a gingerbread house

8. Have an Elf on the Shelf

9. Night Before Christmas Box

Make up a box of all the things needed on the night before Christmas or for Christmas morning.  You can put pajamas, a mug with a bag of hot chocolate and marshmallows, a Christmas book, a Christmas movie, slippers, and a family game in the box. For older children, you can add things like perfume/cologne/ hair accessories, socks, or anything they may use in their night-time or morning routine.

10. Candy Cane Hunt

I saw this on Pinterest and thought it was cute.  You can hide candy canes around the house on Christmas morning and have the kids search for them.

11. Make reindeer food and leave cookies for Santa

Click here for an excellent reindeer food recipe.  You can also leave whoopers candy around where you left the reindeer food, so the kids can see the reindeer poop left behind.

12. Do a community service project.

I feel that it’s very important for kids to help others, especially during the holidays.  Talk to your kids about different ways to help others.  Let them decide who they should help.  Some ideas are bringing food to an animal shelter, making little gifts for seniors, making a care package for a soldier abroad, or dropping off a gift to a homeless shelter; the possibilities are endless.

13. Santa Footprints

This is a fun way to show the kids that Santa is here.  There are a couple of ways you can do this.  

One way is to spread wax paper or parchment paper on the table.  Sprinkle a good helping of flour or powdered sugar over the paper.

Stamp a man’s boot into the flour or powdered sugar and stamp it on the floor to look like footprints.  Another way to make footprints is to put the boot on the floor and sprinkle the flour or powdered sugar around it.  

Another fun idea to prove that Santa was here is to have the kids place flour or powdered sugar on a baking tray and put it in the fireplace (no on or hot, of course), then mom or dad can make boot prints in on the tray.  When the kids wake up, they can see that Santa did come down the chimney.

14. Celebrate St. Nicks Day

The feast of St. Nicholas is celebrated on 12/6.  On the eve of St. Nicholas Day, 12/5, place your child’s shoes by the front door.  Have the kids leave their Christmas list in their shoes.  In the morning, they will find St. Nicholas took their list and left them a nice treat.

15. Have an advent calendar and do a 25-day to-Christmas countdown. Click here to find out daily activities you can do as a family to celebrate the holidays.

16.  The most important tradition is to breathe and enjoy the season.  Sometimes, we get so busy preparing for the special day during the holidays that we look over the little things.  

Remember that kids are only kids once and only for a little while.  Don’t take any time you have for granted.  Enjoy your kids, take lots of pictures, and make memories.

Have a wonderful holiday!